Steve Kragthorpe is confident Louisville will bounce back quickly from their 40-34 loss to Kentucky. History is on Kragthorpe's side. Since 2003, Louisville is 7-1 after a loss and has won their last six games after a loss. The last time the Cardinals dropped back-to-back games came in 2003 when TCU and Memphis knocked off Bobby Petrino's first team in consecutive weeks.
Syracuse Right Opponent for Quick Recovery
The Orange enter Saturday's game 0-3. But even their dismal record doesn't tell the complete story of just how far Syracuse has slipped on the gridiron in recent years. Once a high-octane offense under Donovan McNabb and Marvin Harrison, Syracuse has become anemic on offense. The Orange enter Saturday's game against Louisville ranked 117th nationally in rushing offense, 97th in passing offense, 116th in total and scoring offense. Syracuse isn't much better on defense where the Orange rank 114th in the nation against the run, 101st in total defense and 108th in scoring defense.
first start against Kentucky.
While Louisville opens their Big East schedule this week against winless Syracuse, a brutally tough conference slate awaits the Cardinals. Four Big East programs are ranked in the USA Today Top 25 this week: No. 5 West Virginia; No. 11 Rutgers; No. 19 Louisville and No. 24 South Florida. Only the SEC (6) and Big XII (5) boast more Top 25 teams this week.
Third Down a Charm
Louisville's explosive offense, led by Brian Brohm, Harry Douglas and Anthony Allen, lead the nation in third down conversion percentage at 62.9 percent. Minnesota, Texas Tech, Penn State and LSU round out the Top 5. The Cardinals converted 8 of 13 third downs last week against UK and have converted 60 percent or better in all three games this season.
Myles the Hit Man
Lamar Myles is quickly developing into the Cardinals best tackler on defense. Not only does the junior linebacker lead Louisville in tackles with 32, the 6-0, 215 pound junior registered 22 tackles against Kentucky, the fifth best single-game total in school history.
"He's going to lay all 212 pounds of his body out there every time he plays," Kragthorpe said. "He's not a big guy in terms of stature but he's a big guy in terms of the way he plays in big games. He's going to be very aggressive and stick his face in there and play when he's banged up. He's an everyday player. He comes to practice with a work-man like attitude every day. He's a man of few words but he shows a lot of leadership the way he steps into the huddle and the way he practices every day."
rushing pace this season.
Sophomore Anthony Allen is on pace to shatter the U of L single-season rushing record, held by Howard Stevens, who rushed for 1,429 yards in 1971. Allen set a school single game record by rushing for 275 yards against Middle Tennessee and has rushed for 427 yards, a gaudy 7.1 yards per carry, in just three games this season. He also has six touchdowns – five rushing, one receiving.
"Anthony has stepped up and done a nice job," Kragthorpe said. "He caught the ball well out of the backfield the other night, pass protected well and ran the ball well. I thought it was his most complete game that I've seen him play, including the games that I watched last year. That was our challenge to him this year was to be a complete players and an every down player. I think he has continually showed us that he can take on that role."